Magical Christmas Markets in Innsbruck Old Town:
Innsbruck is a charming Austrian town at any time of the year, but at Christmas time it’s magical. There are seven Christmas markets in this city, the main one being in the historic Old Town (Altstadt). The market is right in front of the landmark Goldenes Dachl. Innsbruck’s Golden Roof is the town’s most iconic tourist attraction.
A giant Christmas tree stands in the middle of the square, in front of the Golden Roof. All around there are some 70 stalls selling traditional Christmas foods, Christmas decorations, handicrafts, candles, carved cribs and decorative wood or straw figures. A good view over the roofs of the stalls is from the viewing platform.
Tempting Market Foods
We actually have dinner planned for later this evening, but the aroma of raclette wafting in the cold, crisp air is just too hard to resist.
Following our nose, we find the stall easily and we buy a plate of piping hot raclette and some glühwein. There are plenty of people here tonight and table space is a bit scarce, but we did find a spot under the Milky Way.
Whilst enjoying the delicious grilled raclette on bread, live carols start up from the balcony of the Golden Roof building. Standing in this historical square, surrounded by beautifully preserved medieval facades and with carols filling the air, the experience can only be described as magical!
It gets even more amazing when the “Turmbläser” (Tower Brass Band) comes on. We didn’t know at the time but they play Christmas songs daily from the balcony of the Golden Roof. The pure sound of the trumpets from up above makes my hair stand on ends, especially when we have a rendition of the “Triumphant March” from Aida.
After the raclette, we stroll through the market to check out the stalls. Traditional delicacies such as Kiachln (piping hot doughnuts filled with Sauerkraut or jam) and Spatzln (small cheesy dumplings) are popular, but we’ve had our feed.
There’s plenty of street entertainment about and at a couple of the stages huge crowds gather to enjoy the shows.
Innsbruck Shopping Precinct
The Christmas market starts during Advent and the market in the Old Town operates from 11:00 to 20:30 daily.
The Old Town district is also a shopping precinct and the streets are beautifully decorated with Christmas lights and crystals. As you would know, Austria is home to Swarovski Crystals.
Stick your head in the shops and you’ll see them loaded with all kinds of sweet Austrian temptations, speck and other foods. If you like your sweets, call into Konditorei Munding, the most traditional confectioners in town, where you can buy some ‘Golden Roof shingles’.
Innsbruck Christmas Market Locations:
Apart from the Old Town, the other Christmas markets are:
- Marktplatz – features daily Punch and Judy shows, storytellers and a host of other attractions to keep children excited right up to Christmas Eve.
- Maria-Theresien-Straße – Innsbruck’s main boulevard turns into a ‘Christmas zone’ filled with Christmas market stalls.
- St Nikolaus District – Cross the River Inn and discover one of the best Christmas markets in Innsbruck.
- Wiltener Platzl – This enchanting square is home to a small Christmas market featuring many specialtie.
- Hungerburg – Panoramachristkindlmarkt takes place in this mountain town where you can enjoy exceptional views and do Christmas shopping in the crisp mountain air.
- Kaiserweihnacht am Bergisel – The Emperor’s Christmas at Bergisel features genuine and traditional Tyrolean and regional products.
Innsbruck’s Altstadt Christmas Market is one of my favourites and we’ve been back here a few times.